Stabbed to death, rap­per known as Splash Ad­dict*

* That’s slang for lik­ing bloody knife at­tacks

Daily Mail - - News - By Chris Green­wood and Harry Howard

‘A sum­mer of gang reprisals’

THE lat­est teenage vic­tim of Lon­don’s Wild West crime­wave was a ‘drill’ rap­per who boasted of his love of knives. Lat­waan Grif­fiths, 18, died from stab wounds hav­ing fallen off the back of a moped as a friend tried to rush him to hos­pi­tal.

De­tec­tives sus­pect he may have been tar­geted by mem­bers of a ri­val gang af­ter footage of him goad­ing them was posted on­line. He was known as SA Latz, or Splash Ad­dict, and was a mem­ber of the Har­lem Spar­tans music col­lec­tive. His nick­name and the group’s provoca­tive lyrics re­fer to ‘splash­ing’ or ‘get­ting splashed up’, ur­ban slang for stab­bing some­one and be­ing spat­tered with their blood.

Po­lice are con­cerned that drill music – a brand of rap which of­ten fea­tures masked young men bran­dish­ing guns and knives – is fu­elling soar­ing vi­o­lence. Footage emerged yes­ter­day of more than a dozen men be­ing lined up against a park fence by armed of­fi­cers af­ter be­ing caught record­ing a video.

Lat­waan was known to po­lice as a gang mem­ber in Ken­ning­ton, South-East Lon­don, and had been ar­rested for of­fences in­clud­ing pos­sess­ing a ma­chete and a knife, and rob­bing a ri­val.

Most took place in and around the Ken­ning­ton Park Es­tate which the Har­lem Spar­tans used as a back­drop for their videos.

On­line com­ments asked if Lat­waan had been tar­geted by mem­bers of ri­val gangs such as 410, based in Brix­ton, or Zone 2, based in Peck­ham.

Sev­eral pointed out that a video of the vic­tim record­ing a rap mock­ing 410 has been viewed more than 20,000 times.

They warned that Lon­don faces a ‘bloody sum­mer’ of vi­o­lent gang reprisals, with one say­ing: ‘Some­one is get­ting deaded.’

One teenage as­so­ci­ate said Lat­waan was ‘100 per cent’ im­mersed in South Lon­don gang cul­ture, but his fame as an on­line rap­per meant he ‘could have gone main­stream’.

Ac­cord­ing to the Har­lem Spar­tans’ own lyrics, more than ten of its mem­bers have been jailed in re­cent months. Their best-known track, Call Me A Spar­tan, has reg­is­tered more than six mil­lion views. An­other, Ken­ning­ton Bop, opens with the line: ‘Come round Ken­ning­ton, come around ready for war.’

Last night Lat­waan’s mother Mar­sha McNamee, 39, said she was too up­set to speak. Po­lice are still hunt­ing the rider of the moped which dumped Lat­waan near King’s Col­lege Hos­pi­tal, Cam­ber­well, on Thurs­day. The rider shouted ‘Help him, he’s been stabbed’ be­fore speed­ing off. Lat­waan was helped by by­standers be­fore be­ing taken into hos­pi­tal where he died. It is not known where the at­tack took place.

Lat­waan was the 52nd per­son fa­tally stabbed in Lon­don this year as po­lice try to get to grips with a knife crime epi­demic. A 17-year-old boy has been ar­rested on sus­pi­cion of mur­der.

Provoca­tive lyrics: Lon­don rap­per Lat­waan Grif­fiths

Per­form­ing: Lat­waan in a video for a Har­lem Spar­tans song

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